Kings Langley Game of Thrones rebranding to 'Kings Landing' gets mixed reception from villagers

Watford Observer: Sean Bean in Game of Thrones Sean Bean in Game of Thrones

Villagers have expressed confusion and said they "don’t see the point" of Kings Langley’s temporarily changing its name to "Kings Landing" to mark the release of the new series of Game of Thrones.

Dacorum Borough Council and Kings Langley Parish Council are working with HBO Home Entertainment to change the village name to "Kings Landing" for one week. 

Kings Landing is the capital of the fictional kingdom in the historical fantasy HBO series.

Jane Leithead, 33, of Watford Road, said: "It’s a bit weird and confusing, but the fact the council actually thinks of something a bit funny and off the wall is great, but then the Games of Thrones is actually extremely violent.

"I’m torn, I’d tell all my friends but I don’t know how much people in the village would know or care what the Game of Thrones is. It’s large proportion of older people living here.

"I like the quirkiness, and there’s obviously someone in the council who is a fan, but I don’t see the point I suppose."

Eva Hitchcock, 75, of Langley Hill, said: "I haven’t seen the programme or read the books, but I don’t really mind it happening as long as it’s just for a week."

The council has said that local businesses and restaurants in the high street will be encouraged to get involved and offer a one-off Game of Thrones themed item on their menus and host posters in their stores to support the weeklong event.

Jenny Searn, manager at The Young Pretender, said: "We’ve just heard about the name changing but haven’t heard anything from the council themselves. We want to know whether someone is going to talk to us and get us all involved.

"We know the signs are going to be changed but what else? Are we expected to do anything? I think it’s a good idea but someone needs to talk to us about it and tell us what they’d like us to do."

Gareth Tibbles, also a manager at The Young Pretender, added: "Some of our guys are asking if they can dress up, and is there going to be characters from the programmes coming to the village.

We’d really like to get involved but there hasn’t been any consultation. It should be made into a bigger thing.

Even if all the shops dressed their windows, that would be good. We’ll get involved if we are given the nod. It needs to put Kings Langley on the map by getting all the businesses involved." 

Other residents have suggested the weeklong event to be made into a festival.

Russell Mount, 23, a graphic designer who works in Fred and Ginger, in High Street, said: "I think it’s good that they are trying to put the village on the map, but they should have events and things because if it’s just a place that has changed its name it’s not that interesting. I think it’s good and it’s quite exciting though."

Lorraine Pierleoni, who works in Montague’s Gallery, added: "It’s quite exciting and a bit weird. I think they should make it into a bit more of an event though, with a festival feel, to make it worth doing."

Dacorum Borough Council said HBO would be footing the bill to have the signs changed and then put back.

Karen Attwood, 52, of Willow Hedge, said: "If it’s only temporary it doesn’t do any harm and it puts the name out for Kings Langley. If it was permanent then I might have an objection."

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